A CRISPR Screen Identifies Myc-associated Zinc Finger Protein (MAZ) as an Insulator Functioning at CTCF boundaries in Hox Clusters [article]

Havva Ortabozkoyun Kara, Pin-Yao Huang, Hyunwoo Cho, Varun Narendra, Gary LeRoy, Jane A. Skok, Aristotelis Tsirigos, Esteban O. Mazzoni, Danny Reinberg
2020 bioRxiv   pre-print
The essential CCCTC-binding factor (CTCF) is critical to three-dimensional (3D) genome organization. CTCF binding insulates active and repressed genes within the Hox clusters upon differentiation, but such binding does not participate in boundary formation in all cell types, such as embryonic stem cells. We conducted a genome-wide CRISPR knockout screen to identify genes required for CTCF boundary activity at the HoxA cluster, complemented by novel biochemical approaches. This screen identified
more » ... Myc-associated zinc finger protein (MAZ) as a CTCF insulator co-factor, among other candidates listed herein. MAZ depletion or specific deletion of MAZ motifs within the Hox clusters led to de-repression of posterior Hox genes immediately after CTCF boundaries upon differentiation, which phenocopied deletion of the proximal CTCF motifs. Similar to CTCF, MAZ interacted with the cohesin subunit, RAD21. Upon loss of MAZ, local contacts within topologically associated domains (TADs) were disrupted, as evidenced by HiC analysis. Thus, MAZ is a novel factor sharing insulation properties with CTCF and contributing to the genomic architectural organization.
doi:10.1101/2020.08.25.267237 fatcat:tvhgdnmqlrbxde3jgu6cfoia4a